Strategic Tourism Assets Protection Programme

The Strategic Tourism Assets Protection Programme (STAPP) is intended to protect the assets in the tourism landscape that form the core of our essential tourism offerings to ensure their survival through the disruption caused by COVID-19.

Overview

The Strategic Tourism Assets Protection Programme (STAPP) was allocated to support tourism businesses, Inbound Tour Operators (ITOs) and Regional Tourism Organisations (RTOs).

Decisions on funding allocations were made by the former Tourism Recovery Ministers Group. The Tourism Recovery Ministers Group has confirmed that all funding available under the STAPP process has been allocated. No new applications can be made or reconsiderations of original decisions undertaken.

For enquires about STAPP, email strategictourismassets@mbie.govt.nz.

Further detail about the STAPP process, eligibility, and decision making.

Businesses

There were 305 applicants for STAPP support. 160 applications were ineligible, and of the 145 eligible applications, 18 applicants were unsuccessful.

Additionally, the Tourism Recovery Ministers Group had a mandate to decide on urgent investments which are outside the application round, and did so for AJ Hackett, Discover Waitomo, and Whale Watch Kaikōura.

Overall, 130 businesses received offers of support through STAPP.

Businesses supported through STAPP have all been offered funding via grants, and some also loans. This includes a grant over 2 years, and potential additional funding via a loan. The terms and conditions of loans are designed to be concessionary, and are as follows:

  • 5 year loan terms
  • interest free and no repayments for the first 24 months
  • interest rate of 3% per annum
  • loans to be subordinated to other debt instruments and creditors, but in front of equity investors
  • loans to be unsecured.

A list of STAPP recipients, along with grant and loan values, are listed on the funding recipient’s page.

More information on recipient funding.

Inbound Tour Operators (ITOs)

Inbound Tour Operators (ITOs) promote and sell New Zealand travel packages to offshore buyers. In recognition of the key link that ITOs provide between overseas wholesalers and travel sellers, in September 2020, the Government made up to $20 million in loans available to key ITOs, so that ITOs are prepared to help rebuild visitation when international travel resumes.

The former Tourism Recovery Ministers Group asked Tourism New Zealand (TNZ) to provide advice to inform their decisions on how the loan funding for ITOs should be distributed. TNZ has in-depth knowledge of the key ITOs active in our major visitor markets and high value market segments.

Final decisions about the allocation of the loan funding for ITOs and details of the loan terms were made by the former Tourism Recovery Ministers Group.

In total, 26 ITOs were offered loans. The loan offers are based on a tiered system that links the value of the loans with the value of approximated revenue that ITOs generated prior to COVID-19.

ITO Revenue (pre-COVID-19) Value of loan offer
$0-$4,999,999 $250,000
$5,000,000-$9,999,999 $500,000
$10,000,000-$19,999,999 $750,000
$20,000,000+ $1,000,000

 

As an example, an ITO that had an estimated revenue of $15,000,000 pre-COVID-19 would have received a loan offer of $750,000. The terms and conditions of the loans are designed to be concessionary, and are as follows:

  • 5 year loan terms
  • interest free and no repayments for the first 24 months
  • interest rate of 3% per annum
  • loans to be subordinated to other debt instruments and creditors, but in front of equity investors
  • loans to be unsecured

In May 2021, the Minister of Tourism announced as part of the Tourism Communities: Support, Recovery and Re-set Plan, the conversion of up to $500,000 (per ITO) of the STAPP loans to grants.

More information on the Tourism Communities: Support, Recovery and Re-set Plan

A list of ITO recipients, along with grant and loan values, are listed on the funding recipient’s page.

More information on funding recipients(external link)

Regional Tourism Organisations (RTOs)

RTOs play an important role in supporting the tourism system. The tourism sector depends on capable, secure and adequately resourced RTOs that lead and coordinate activities in their regions, alongside the tourism industry, stakeholders, Māori/iwi and communities.

As part of STAPP, up to $20.2 million in grants was allocated to the 31 RTOs across New Zealand.

The investment plans that RTOs were required to develop have now been assessed and their funding confirmed.

Overall, the investment will support RTOs to implement destination management and planning, and encourage more people to explore their regions. The funding will also allow RTOs to support the broader tourism industry, stimulate regional demand, increase industry capability and progress the goals of the New Zealand-Aotearoa Government Tourism Strategy. 

In May 2021, RTOs have also received an additional $26,000,000 through the Tourism Communities: Support, Recovery and Re-set Plan.

More information on the Tourism Communities: Support, Recovery and Re-set Plan

More information on recipient funding

Last updated: 14 May 2021